Claudia Clemente

BSc Geography (Human) and Planning (2007)
Current Job: 
Assistant Planner, Drivers Jonas Deloitte

Why did you choose Cardiff University as a place to study?

I really liked the city when I visited for an open day, and when discussing the course with lecturers, it really appealed as it would build on my knowledge from school and would develop a new skill in learning about planning.

What was the best thing about your time as a student at Cardiff?

The city was a brilliant place to study, as it had a great student atmosphere and was compact and walkable. Making great friends and studying an interesting subject really made the time memorable, and I look back on it very fondly.

What thing or person inspired you most whilst you were a Cardiff University student?

Jon Anderson’s lectures on Geography and Culture were particularly inspiring, and provided a basis for my dissertation, the subject of which has developed into a long term interest!
The Taff Trail and Bute Park were inspiring and provided a brilliant opportunity to give perspective to the thought of writing a 3000 word essay in 48 hours… not that I ever did that…

What one thing would you tell someone else about the School of Geography and Planning at Cardiff?

Very approachable lecturers and plenty of opportunities to interact in different areas of the School. I would recommend that any prospective student identifies areas that they are interested in early on in order to become familiar with the key issues and the lecturers that will be able to provide guidance in this area.

How did your degree most help you in the career or job you have now chosen?

I went on from my degree to be offered a bursary to do a Masters in Planning Policy and Practice at London South Bank University, which focused my understanding of planning developed in my BSc degree and built upon it to create a foundation for my career as a planner.

Tell us a bit about your current job, how you got into what you are doing and what you enjoy about it most.

I am an Assistant Planner with Drivers Jonas Deloitte in Birmingham, and have been so for two and a half years. I got into it whilst doing my Masters in London, and started part time work experience for the London Planning Team. During my time in Birmingham, I have been involved in a major mixed use development in central Bath, which has been interesting in terms of the context of the World Heritage Site; and have taken a key role in the preparation and submission of a major outline application for residential development in outer Leeds. My job has given me the opportunity to develop my understanding of the intricacies of the planning system and I am successfully developing specialisms in particular areas of the system. I have recently submitted my Assessment of Professional Competence to the RTPI as application to become a Chartered Member of the Institute.

What opportunities do you feel have opened up to you as a result of being a student at the School of Geography and Planning?

The School has a fantastic reputation amongst the Planning Schools of the UK and this definitely helped me when exploring postgraduate and employment opportunities.

Tell us any interesting facts about yourself, hobbies or interests that you have.

I am involved in YPwestmids (RTPI’s Young Planners community in the West Midlands), and was previously a member of the YPwestmids Organising Committee. I have a keen interest in cooking and like to experiment with food and ingredients, particularly when accompanied by wine. I enjoy crafts, and am an almost competent knitter! I enjoy travelling, and have spent the last few years exploring US cities, including San Francisco, New York and Boston.